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The RijsdorpSurname Surname Project


Rysdorp, Rijsdorp, Risdorp, Riesdorf, and similar last names. The Rijsdorp Surname DNA project is a project to identify common ancestry roots for those with the last name Rijsdorp, and other variations, plus those names identified as being ones the Rijsdorp line descends from (including the last name "Wouters"). This may ultimately show one common DNA line, or several lines. One known Rijsdorp line descends from a family with the last name Wouters, and has been identified as far back as about 1748. It appears that, shortly after moving to the Netherlands, his last name changed from Wouters to Wouters van Riesdorf. Then because of Dutch spelling, it became Rijsdorf, then Rijsdorp. Some lines of this family remained in the Netherlands, and others moved to America at varying times. There are several spellings on records in the Netherlands, and several different spellings in America. The American variations appear to be a mixture of changes at immigration points, changes due to pronunciation, and changes due to how others interpreted how the last name was written. It is thought that the name Rijsdorp probably comes from the name of a village or area in Germany. According to a Rijsdorp researcher in the Netherlands, there are apparently 11 different places (i.e. villages or areas) in Germany with names that are a version of "Riesdorp, Reesdorp, Reisdorp, or Reisdorf". There is also a hamlet "Riesdorf" in Luxembourg. The Rijsdorp researcher in the Netherlands feels that the "Wouters" in the Netherlands, who changed his name to Rijsdorp, or his parents, probably came from one of the German villages, and not Luxembourg, because in that era (around 1750) there were a lot of German migrant workers in the Netherlands. He understands that some earlier arrivals in America, who used the name Reisdorf, probably came from Luxembourg. With 12 villages with similar names, and a number of potential common names which might be qualified by the village or area someone came from, there could be a number of potential genetic lines with similar last names, with each line being different. Yet it is possible others may be genetically related, and if these can be found, it might help everyone network where common lines are found, and try to work out how earlier connections might exist. For the original "Wouters" name, one Dutch source says that "Wouters" means "woodcutter" or "forester" (possibly even "carpenter"). Several American sources say that "Wouters" is the "Son of Wouter", and "Wouter" is the Dutch version of "Walther". The American sources go on to say tnat the name Walter comes from the German, Sweedish, and Polish "Wald" (rule) and "Hari" (army or warrior), which would mean that "Waldhar" was an "army ruler" or "folk ruler". Either way, it appears to have been a common enough name so the qualifier "van Riesdorf" was added to the original "Wouters".



Other surnames in Project

Reijsdorf, Reijsdorp, Reijsdorph, Riesdorf, Riesdorp, Riesdorph, Rijsdorf, Rijsdorp, Rijsdorph, Risdorf, Risdorp, Risdorph, Rysdorf, Rysdorp, Rysdorph, Walters, Wouters

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